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Latino Daily News

Tuesday October 2, 2012

Peace Talks Between Colombia and FARC to Begin October 15

Representatives of Colombia’s FARC rebel group said that peace talks with the Andean nation’s government will begin Oct. 15, a week later than originally announced.

Rebel negotiator Rodrigo Granda read from Havana on the Colombian station Blu Radio a communique he said was signed by both the FARC and the Colombian government.

He referred to the “commitment signed” on Aug. 26 in Havana which led to the general accord for ending the conflict and building a stable, lasting peace, which set the stage for a roundtable of dialogue to be opened in Oslo, with negotiations to be moved later to Cuba.

The Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, had previously said that the meeting in the Norwegian capital would be on Oct. 8, but last weekend some Colombian media broke the news that the date would be postponed.

Shortly before that, another FARC negotiator, Marco Leon Calarca, told Efe in an interview that “in the first two weeks of this month” formal talks would begin.

The Colombian government and the FARC are beginning the third peace process in almost 50 years of armed conflict, with Cuba and Norway as mediators and with Chile and Venezuela as observers.

The FARC and the Colombian government announced the agreement in late August after six months of secret negotiations in the Cuban capital.

Founded in 1964, the FARC once had as many as 20,000 men and women under arms, but today numbers around 8,500 fighters.